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UMNO Claims Sweeping Victory In Johor State Election


Barisan Nasional (BN) won the snap election to Johor state assembly by a landslide. The UMNO-led alliance secured a supermajority of 40 out of 56 seats in the legislature, extending its streak of big wins in recent state elections.

  • Barisan Nasional scored a convincing victory despite garnering just 43.11% of the popular vote, as lawmakers were elected in single-seat constituencies using the first-past-the-post system. The turnout (54.92%) was low by local standards, reflecting voters' disillusionment with the current state of Malaysian party politics.
  • The main opposition Pakatan Harapan (PH) alliance reduced its presence in state assembly by more than half to just a dozen seats. Analysts pointed to lack of unity among opposition parties and receding appeal of rhetoric blaming UMNO for the 1MDB scandal as some of the reasons behind defeat.
  • Perikatan Nasional (PN) led by former Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin won just 3 seats (down from 12 before the election) in another sign of its increasingly precarious position within the federal government.
  • When Prime Minister Ismail Sabri arrived in Johor on Saturday, he was greeted with chants "dissolve parliament" as calls within UMNO to call a snap general election grow louder.
  • However, a snap nationwide poll would put the Premier at risk of losing his post. Ismail Sabri was picked as a compromise candidate to succeed Muhyiddin last summer at the helm of the BN-PN government. Should UMNO replicate its regional electoral victories at the national level, his leadership could be challenged by rival UMNO factions already opposed to cooperation with PN.

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